The Street reports that "an Amazon employee is accusing the company of allegedly dodging negative press associated with layoffs and skipping out on providing severance packages by 'silently sacking' its employees to encourage them to leave the company rather than firing them.
"In a recent blog post, Justin Garrison, who is a senior developer at Amazon Web services, claims that the company has been reducing costs by making employees 'miserable' at the company.
"'The negative press associated with layoffs wasn’t good. But the most effective way to reduce operational expenses was to get rid of all the expensive people,' wrote the employee in a blog post. 'How could they force people to leave without severance packages or en masse? Making them miserable and silently sacking them.'
The Street describes “silently sacking” as another phrase for “quiet firing," which is "when management creates a work environment that has deteriorating conditions such as overwork, stalled promotions, little support from management etc. in order to push employees to resign from positions rather than firing them. This tactic could cut costs for a company as they would no longer be obligated to provide employees with severance packages when they resign."
The story notes that "Amazon has laid off roughly 20,000 employees in 2023. Andy Jassy, CEO of Amazon, mentioned in an update that announced a round of layoffs in January last year that the changes will help the company 'pursue our long-term opportunities with a stronger cost structure'."
- KC's View:
In a response to the blog posting by Garrison, an Amazon spokesperson said that the AWS senior developer "has no idea what miserable working conditions are, but he is about to find out."
No - just kidding. That's not what Amazon said. Best I can tell, the company has not responded to the blog posting.
I do think that some of this may not be intentional - layoff that many people, and the folks who remain almost certainly are going to have increased workloads and demands placed upon them. Besides, I've never heard Amazon described as having a kinder, gentler culture - it is a tough, demanding place where not that many people are able to last for very long. They work really hard, get paid decent money, learn a lot, make connections, and then move on to other companies or start their own.